Why a Disaster Recovery Program for MFG/PRO?

Posted on: November 25, 2008 | By: SuperUser Account | QAD Business Process

What should a disaster recovery plan include?

Risk analysis.

This will identify the various points of failure in the system. These can include – but not limited to, database corruption, database server failure, application server failure, network outages, power outages.

Sample Database Server Risk Analysis:

A server down condition is when the server malfunctions in some matter that prevents normal processing of jobs. There is still communications with other servers at the same location. There may even be ways to still access the server. The normal reasons for this type of down situation can include – hardware failure; disc storage failed, motherboard failure, network card failure or some external influence that prevents communication with the server.

Contact Sheets:

Depending on the size of the company there could be many first and second points of contact in the event of a disaster. A contact for each role in the plan should be included. It is best to include an alternate contact in case the primary contact is not available.

Communication Plan:

One of the most important features of a disaster recovery plan is how the status of the is communitated to the users and the rest of the company. It should include what is to be communicated, when communication should occur, and who should receive the communications.

Disaster scripts:

For each item identified in the risk analysis there should be a script that explains what to do in the event of a failure. This should include all steps needed to recover the failed item. These scripts can vary greatly depending on the level of backup that is available. If the only backup is recovery from tape then there should be a detailed step by step script to recover from tape. If the recovery is failing over to a offsite backup server then a detail step by step script of all of the various operations that must be performed to bring up the backup server.

Failover Log:

In the event of a disaster scenario there should be a log kept that notes all significant events of the disaster. This log can be invaluable when doing a post mortem of the disaster.

Hardware and Software Inventory:

There should be an inventory for each piece of hardware, it should in include make, model, serial numbers, specifications, vendor, service provider, and who is authorized to issue PO’s for this hardware if needed.
The software inventory should include the publisher, the version, serial number, license codes, location of the installation media etc.

Plan test and update schedule:

As part of the plan a schedule should be implemented to update review and update the plan. Each portion of the plan should be updated based on changes to the environment. People come and go, contacts need to be changed. New hardware and software are purchased , the inventory needs to be updated. Each part of the plan should be reviewed for accuracy. The plan should also be tested on regular basis to ensure that all parts of the plan are performing as intended.

While these are the primary concepts of what should be in a plan, each company has its own requirements that need to be included in a disaster recovery plan. A good disaster recovery plan does not just happen, as in every project it requires the input of many individuals, the commitment from management to expend the resources needed, and the know how to execute the project.

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